Diagram Brothers - Some Marvels Of Modern Science
Label: New Hormones
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album
Record is VG++
Cover VG+ VG++ slight wear
Released: 20 Nov 1981
Style: New Wave
A1 Those Men In White Coats
A2 My Bad Chest Feels Much Better Now
A3 Seals Furcoats
A4 Put It In A Bigger Box
A5 Words From Major
A6 Here Come The Visitors
A7 Isn't It Interesting How Neutron Bombs Work
B1 Ron! The Morris Minor's Gone
B2 I'm A Policeman
B3 I Didn't Get Where I Am Today By Being A Right Git
B5 I'm Not Going To Fight For Oil
Noises – Jason Diagram Noises [Ambient Noise] – Eric Random Diagram
Recorded At– Cargo Studios
The line-up for the band was :
Fraser Diagram - Vocals / Guitars
Lawrence Diagram - Guitar
Andy Diagram - Bass
Simon Diagram - Drums
The Diagram Brothers were a quartet of passingly deranged Mancunians who produced a few singles, an album and an EP mostly on the Buzzcock's New Hormones label, all except their first single We Are All Animals.
They did songs of urban angst in the most discordant way possible, usually with brass and electric guitars but they weren't afraid to use milk bottles, bread trays and Casio VL-Tones either. Art terrorism at its most polite.
They also put the Manchester Evening News to music which is probably a first. Trouser Press magazine reckoned that they were a poor man's XTC but this is a disservice to both bands. They both liked to play silly buggers on occasion but otherwise had little in common.
information for this piece comes from Jonathan Howard
Andy said about the Diagram Brothers in an exclusive interview with One Of The Three
Diagram Brothers from 1980 to 1982. Me and my brothers formed this guitar band, in Manchester. I played bass guitar. We called the music "Discordo". The music was made to a strict formula or set of rules. All the guitar chords were based on discordant notes, all the beats were very simple rock or disco, and all the words were very very straightforward and down to earth. Let me give you an example :
"Bricks, lay them down in a straight line. Bricks, build them into a wall. Bricks, very useful objects. They're not expensive at all."
The Diagram Brothers were big favourites on the John Peel show, we recorded three sessions for him that he played many times. The Diagram brothers recorded 2 singles, an album and an EP for New Hormones label ( the Buzzcocks label). They are not available any more,
Andy Diagram is now one of David Thomas’ Two Pale Boys.
I also know their records were released by Richard Boon’s legendary New Hormones label.
Get past some of the humorous titles – “Ron! The Morris Minor’s Gone”, “I Didn’t Get Where I Am Today By Being A Right Git” – and what you have is a really exciting new wave art rock band that owe as much to the No Wave of the Contortions as they do to the UK punk scene and the art rock of Pere Ubu.
The guitars are all stainless steel clean, tones you could cut your finger on.
There’s some beautiful percussion, hints of both Devo and The Slits in the time changing and call and response chants, and bass playing that could be a forerunner to the avant noodling of Stump’s Kev Hopper.
The only downside is the ocassional low of some of the lyric writing. It can sometimes be a little too cleverly naive.
But then what would you expect from a group of young men making music where and when they did?
Don’t worry if you, like me, don’t know a great deal about The Diagram Brothers.
Regardless of whether or not you’re interested in experimental english pop of the late 70`s and early 80`s, if you like your pop music guitar driven, interesting, thought provoking, hummable and catchy then you’ll dig this to pieces.
The releases were :
October 1980 - We Are All Animals / There Is No Shower 7" (Construct Records - cat no CON-1)
July 1981 - Bricks / Postal Bargains 7" (New Hormones - cat no ORG9)
November 1981 - Some Marvels Of Modern Science (LP) (New Hormones - cat no ORG17)
July 1982 - Discordo 10" EP (New Hormones - cat no ORG21)
Diagram Brothers - I didn't get where I am today by being a right git
This is live footage of the UK band "The Diagram Brothers" shot in 1982. It is taken from the 'Riverside' arts program that was around at the time. The song "I didn't get where I am today by being a right git" was the second of two songs featured on the program
Diagram Brothers - Isn't it interesting how neutron bombs work?"